First, Ray talks about a random person who claims he was once a Christian and then became an atheist:
… Hold it there for a moment. He was once a strong Christian? Let’s analyze what he is saying. A Christian is someone who knows the Lord: “And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent” (John 17:3, see also Hebrews 8:11). So our atheist friend is admitting that he knew the Lord? He is admitting that God is real and he has turned his back on Him? If confronted with such a thought, he will predictably say, “I thought I knew the Lord.” If that’s the case, then he was never a Christian. He thought he was, but he wasn’t. He was a false convert.
Strangely enough, I’ve heard the same thing said about Kirk Cameron, when he claimed to once be an atheist.
Anyway, Ray goes on…
There is one well-known atheist who has an itinerant ministry, who says that he was a Christian pastor for 17 years. That’s impressive. Judas only managed to fake it for three and a half years. This man faked it for seventeen years–in a pulpit! His name is Dan Barker. A number of years ago I emailed Dan and explained about the Judas thing. Barker bit back that if I ever contacted him again, I would hear from his lawyers. Wow! I must have struck a roar nerve (deliberate spelling).We often call these people bitter “backsliders.” However, they aren’t backsliders, because they never slid forward in the first place. The correct term for them is “false converts.” They are mentioned in Mark chapter 4, and in the Book of Peter, where they are likened to a pig that goes back to it’s filth, and a dog that returns to its vomit.
Well, that’s just plain false.
Dan Barker, who is co-president of the Freedom From Religion Foundation, doesn’t use lawyers against individuals, only the government. And that’s only when they break the law.
Plus, he’s an incredibly nice guy who would hardly “bite back” at anyone.
Oh. And he really was a Christian pastor who believed everything a Christian does. He writes about it in his book Losing Faith in Faith. He didn’t “fake it” for 17 years. It was only toward the end of that stretch, when doubts seeped in, that Dan felt that he wasn’t being honest to himself anymore and he left the pulpit.
I asked Dan if Ray’s comments were accurate.
His response (via email):
Actually, I found the email correspondence between me and Ray Comfort from 2001. I did NOT say he would be hearing from my lawyers. I said I would contact his provider to complain about using email for harassment. I asked him to stop emailing me, after we hit a dead-end, and he continued, after being asked not to continue.
No lawyers at all. Just Ray being annoying and Dan asking him to stop. Dan posted a comment on Ray’s blog correcting this lie.
As of yet, that comment has not been approved.